Makinti Napanagka shares Kudditji’s palette in the sunshine

Sometimes I tend to favour certain colourway when sourcing my artworks. Recently it must have been yellow! Not a colour that I live with normally, I can sense a palpable happiness when I look at both Kudditji’s yellow work and this amazing vibrant yellow and violet painting by Makinti Napanangka. Hanging at Fanuli’s Cremorne showroom, the painting measures 1400 x 2200mm and was painted in the final year of Makinti’s life. It continues to convey the high energy, and spirited approach to art that Makinti always expressed through her work.

Kudditji adds a little bit of sunshine, on a winters day

Renown for his bold, heavily painted works, Kudditji’s latest work at Fanuli’s showroom in Cremorne is a slightly out of his normal sphere. Using a reduced palette of three shades of yellow, he has thinned down his paint before applying it to the canvas, giving it a translucent, almost gossamer thin quality. The size of the work (1500 x 2000), coupled with the intensity of a single colour, make a really confident, sunny, contemporary statement.

Barbara Weir’s beautiful paired back elegance


This very beautiful work by Barbara Weir graces the entrance foyer of a home in Church Point, NSW.  Executed using a minimal palette of blue, white and lilac, the painting welcomes guests in to the home and acts as a pre-curser to the stunning water and bush views of the penninsular below.  An antique french chandelier, Persian rug and modern tin barrel stool complete the elegant, yet eclectic look.

Spring has sprung

Nothing quite says “Spring is in the air” like a beautiful piece of Aboriginal art, complimented by bright colourful soft furnishings. This delicious vignette displays a real confidence in the mixing of Gloria Petyarre’s soft fluid “Leaves Dreaming” with cushions in strong geometric black and white, yellow and chartreuse patterns. If only you could hear the sound of the ocean, lapping at the door!

Meryl Hare launches new book

Last night I was lucky enough to attend the launch of Interior Design doyenne Meryl Hare’s new book Texture Colour Comfort, written in conjunction with David Clark, ex Editor in Chief of Vogue Living magazine.

Held at Fanuli’s recently refurbished Cremorne showroom, the launch was a Who’s Who of the Australian Interior Design industry and was hosted by Belle Magazine editor in chief Neale Whitaker.

Meryl Hare and her practise Hare & Klein have long been a guiding light in my own interior design journey. She was a judge in my final year at Enmore Design College as I completed my Advanced Diploma of Interior Design. Her aesthetic and style have always resonated with me – highly textural, honest apprroachable, elegant and comfortable – not to mention that she loves to incorporate Aboriginal artworks into her design schemes.

The book, Hare + Klein Texture Colour Comfort is an explosion of colour, texture and seemingly effortless interiors, that encapsulate a uniquely relaxed, casual, sunny Australian attitude to easy living. Congratulations Meryl and David for so beautifully translating your passion and energy into this stunning book.

You’ve just got to love it!

Whether you are buying a piece of art for the first time or adding to an existing collection of works, the most important criteria is that you are passionate about the painting.

A frequent question that I am asked as an art consultant is “How do you know what painting to buy?” The simple answer and the complicated answer is – “Buy it because you love it”. If you are buying art as an investment there will be other criteria such as growth potential, the investment potential of particular artists, long and short term growth prospects etc etc etc.

However, if you don’t have an affinity with the painting, if it dosent speak to you… and if you can’t establish a conversation with the painting, then why would you want it hanging around, every day in your life?

A painting, well placed, will augment a living space more than any other object. Once you have lived with one beautiful Aboriginal painting, it is highly likely that you will want to fill your entire home with them!

Be careful, that’s exactly what happened to me!

Textural harmony using minimal palette

Fanuli Furniture, Cremorne, NSW are currently showcasing the work of Barney Campbell Tjakamarra.

By layering luxurious texture upon texture Fanuli have created a sophisticated, elegant vignette of calmness. Indonesian inspired Ikat fabric cushions sit on a raw linen textured sofa, with the shot silk curtains bringing a spark of life and vitality, without disturbing the peace!

Barney Campbell Tjakamarra’s Tingari painting measures 1200 x 2000mm and has been beautifully executed in a monochromatic rich cream colour.

From the Land to the canvas

On a recent visit to Alice Springs, Walpiri artist Judy Watson Napangardi arrived with her own stock of fresh bush tomatoes to eat. The bush tomato is one of the stories that Judy depicts in her work, as conveyed by this painting below.

Judy’s paintings are characterised by strong organic lines and circles and heavily textured overlays of sweet muted pastel tones or the more vibrant primary hues. She also paints the stories of honey ants, digging sticks, snake vines and the hair-string belt, made famous by her contemporary Makinti Napanagka.

Revisiting glorious Gloria

Going through my photo library I came across this image which continues to rock my aesthetic world!

For some years now, Aboriginal Art Interiors and Orient House of Glebe NSW have enjoyed a symbiotic relationship – I hang my art on their walls and it truly compliments their range of wonderful African and Asian artifacts and furniture. This picture illustrates how tribal objects work so well together, wherever they originate from. Set against a deep tobacco coloured wall, “Leaves” by artist Gloria Petyarre, employing a minimal cream and white palette, compliments the raw boldness of an African mask and the aged patina of an antique chinese alter table.

What I am reading at the moment

The latest book in my shelves is “How Aborigines invented the idea of contemporary art” – writings on Aboriginal contemporary art edited and introduced by Ian McLean. The book traces the slow and ambiguous way in which the Australian art world, perceived Aboriginal art and its eventual place in the contemporary Australian artscape – why it was not immediately accepted, why it was so difficult to catagorize, what its artistic merit was, why it was valued from an anthropological rather than an artistic viewpoint, its place in the evolution of post-moderism, and much more. The anthology is a fascinating collection of essays, bringing together many unspoken voices and differing opinions – I am thoroughly enjoying it.